What moment would you like to do-over? #AboutTime #ad

by Jennifer Donovan

Our writer attended a local free screening of About Time, and we are being compensated for this campaign. Her opinions are her own.

I think it’s great that we all feel free to share our #MomFail moments. Once we revisit the moment, whether it’s on Facebook, face to face with a friend, in an email or on a blog, it usually doesn’t feel so bad, especially if someone joins in with encouragement that they’ve done the same thing — or even worse! But as easy as some of that comes, I do think that there are deeper, hidden things that we don’t share.

  • I might share about the fact that I forgot to pick up my teen daughter after her club meeting at school, but do I share about the fact that when I’m focused on the computer, a book, or the television that I sometimes just forget her?
  • I might tell that I missed the orthodontist appointment that I had confirmed twice, but would I tell that I haven’t made an OB/GYN appointment in over two years?
  • I might be honest about struggles with getting my kids to do their homework, but would I be as honest about the awful, horrible, tone of voice that comes out during the “conversation” about it?

About Time

It’s the talking — or the not talking — that plagues me with the woulda coulda shoulda’s. Whether it’s with a spouse or a child or a friend or a parent, there are conversations that are so difficult that we either avoid them altogether or botch them when we try.

When Tim (Domhnall Gleeson) turns 21, his father (Bill Nighy) sits him down for a very important conversation. He tells him that the men in his family have always been able to travel in time. Tim doesn’t believe him, but he gives it a try, using the method his dad describes. He thinks back to the night before, when he missed the opportunity to kiss a girl at a New Year’s Eve party at the stroke of midnight. He goes back and makes it right.

About Time

In that scene, you can just feel his frustrations from the first time. She looks at him. He looks at her. Others all around the room are bringing in the new year with the traditional kiss, but Tim gives an awkward handshake. The disappointment on her face is palpable. And Tim is the kind of guy who is not only plagued with the missed opportunity to smooch, but I think he’s just as worried about her feelings.

Please click through to my review of About Time at 5 Minutes for Books, where you can read all of my thoughts on this lovely movie and see this scene in the preview.

Those are the moments that I wish I could do over, the ones where a careless word or action left someone doubting themselves. For example, last month I greeted a friend at Bible study and commented on her shirt, “You’re fancy today.” She got a thoughtful look on her face and said something like “I guess this is different than my plain solids and tailored clothes.” And then the next couple of times I saw her, she said something like “Back to my boring plain shirts.” It’s not a big deal. I didn’t crush her, and she certainly knew that I wasn’t being mean-spirited, but I wish I could zip back to that morning and just say “You look nice today,” not making any sort of comparison to what she usually looked like.

These offhand comments happen more than I like to remember, and they echo in my head. We can’t take back words, but I sure wish I could. And I can’t get a do-over to say omething like “I’m so sorry for what you’ve been going through,” when instead the awkwardness and lack of anything I think will help left me totally mute.

About Time is the new movie from filmmaker Richard Curtis (Love Actually, Notting Hill, Four Weddings and a Funeral), using his signature voice in the world of movies and television, giving audiences unforgettable characters who have alternately allowed us to laugh at our ever-so-human foibles and to share a tear at the extraordinary journeys that accompany our ordinary lives.

About Time posterEnter our great $100 About Time giveaway, but in the meantime, join in the conversation by leaving a comment (you can count it as an entry over at the giveaway post): What words or actions do you wish you could take back, or do differently?

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Email Author    |    Website About Jennifer Donovan

Jennifer Donovan has been a part of the 5 Minutes for Mom team since 2007. She writes product reviews, covers events, and manages the 5 Minutes for Books weekly column and website. She lives in Houston and blogs at Snapshot about life with her family.

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{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

1 happymomc October 18, 2013 at 12:29 pm

I wish I would not have stopped talking to my friend who moved away.


2 Martha C. October 18, 2013 at 6:28 pm

I wish I wouldn’t have commented on my daughters singing at church once. She won’t sing in church anymore. :(


3 Tara October 18, 2013 at 7:53 pm

I have many things I wish I could do over, but I wouldn’t be where I am without them. I wish I wouldn’t react so strongly when things go wrong in my life.


4 Christina Marie October 18, 2013 at 8:26 pm

I wish I had said something thoughtful to my boss when her sister died unexpectedly.


5 Katherine October 19, 2013 at 8:00 am

I wished I had given my children more hugs


6 stephanie October 19, 2013 at 11:45 am

i will not let people walk all over me anymore


7 Rebecca Parsons October 19, 2013 at 2:29 pm

We have a hereditary genetic disease in my dads side of the family called Huntington’s Disease. Well I lost my grandma, dad, aunt and uncle all from this dreadful disease. I wish I would have had this talk that if my kids were to have kids they too could pass this on. But unfortunately I didn’t educate them enough on their choice to have kids without being thoroughly being educated about it. I am now going to be the proud grandma of 2 grand-babies in less than a month. However I still wish that our family wouldn’t have kept the fact that it was such a bad disease even when we were getting ready to all have families. Now I am educating my children as much as I can about it so that they make the right choice for them on having kids, especially if I end up getting this terrible disease.


8 Marti Tabora October 19, 2013 at 5:53 pm

I wish I could do over the amount of time I spend with my son when my dad passed away, they were very close and I spent so much time trying to help my mom with her loss that I didn’t even think about the effect it had on my son. That would definitely be my do over.


9 Amy Tolley October 19, 2013 at 8:45 pm

i have many things i wish i could do over but i dont dwell on the past i live for today and cherish each and every moment with my loved ones ty


10 vickie couturier October 20, 2013 at 10:11 am

I wish that I had spent more time with my Mom an Dad after I grew up


11 angie October 20, 2013 at 2:50 pm

there seems to be so many do over moments in my life but maybe the one I would do over the most is the day I decided not to continue my education


12 Eileen Richter October 21, 2013 at 3:05 am

If I could STILL have the very same wonderful children and would have been assured of this, I would have not married so young and would have started my education before rushing to be an “adult” so soon. I have the greatest gift of the most amazing 6 kids in the world, but I regret not getting the experience, honor, and self esteem I know a degree and job in the field I so would have loved would have given me. More confidence. Less stupid decisions later.


13 Amy Orvin October 21, 2013 at 5:22 am

I wish I could have had a do over with my first relationship


14 Trish F October 22, 2013 at 7:49 pm

Oh my goodness, you wouldn’t have enough time to hear all of mine. Almost everything I’ve said or wrote to my daughter the last 2 years probably should be done over because she still won’t talk to me. :(


15 Kayla October 23, 2013 at 12:36 am

There is a part of me that wishes I could have done a few things differently in my past relationship, however looking back on the relationship several months later, I know the things I did and said in those 2 1/2 years had to be done and said for me to be where I’m currently at right now!

No regrets :)


16 Maria Iemma October 23, 2013 at 1:41 pm

I wish I had stayed in touch with a friend that moved across the country. Instead we both got busy and it’s been so many years…


17 Sunnymay October 23, 2013 at 5:26 pm

I might like to rewind and do over my last pick-up for my youngest adult son at the Akron Canton Airport. He landed 30 minutes early having a tailwind and I was in route, but didn’t look at my phone which was on vibrate until 10 minutes from the airport. I caused him needless worry about being stranded and he scolded me for 10 minutes until I told him, “I heard and was sorry,” a few times.


18 Tammy S October 24, 2013 at 7:58 am

I wish I could do over the times when I have lost my temper with my kids. I wish I had taken a deep breath and calmed down before I spoke.


19 Susan P. October 26, 2013 at 5:24 am

I wish I had gone over to see my mom more when she was going through cancer treatment but she didn’t tell us and didn’t want us there. My dad could have used the help.


20 Cynthia R October 26, 2013 at 10:35 pm

i wish i had not hurt a great guy, he didn’t deserve it.


21 ellen beck October 27, 2013 at 2:02 am

I wish that at times I didnt say hurtful things I didnt really mean that were said in anger not love.


22 Jill Myrick October 28, 2013 at 12:28 pm

I wish that I could go back and redo the date that put me in an abusive situation for nine years,
I would tell him to go away that I have no interest in dating him.



23 sheila ressel October 29, 2013 at 8:12 am

I wish I wouldn’t have lost my patience with my father.


24 Amanda Sakovitz October 29, 2013 at 10:47 am

I would love to do high school over with my grades


25 Susan Smith October 29, 2013 at 12:25 pm

I wish I would have graduated from college.


26 Mya Murphy October 29, 2013 at 2:40 pm

I would not a want do-over. Everything that happens in life is a lesson learned.


27 Lisa M October 29, 2013 at 4:30 pm

I wish I had went to college right out of high school.


28 mary gardner October 29, 2013 at 7:03 pm

i wish i would have cherished every minute with my grandma. i miss her dearly


29 rose paden October 29, 2013 at 7:38 pm

I honestly do not want to redo anything that i have done! My choices I have made and things that I have said made me who I am today. I’ve made mistakes, but who hasn’t! I just look at it as a learning process not something you should burden yourself over.


30 Richard Hicks October 29, 2013 at 9:46 pm

I wish I could do over an old friendship of 15 years that ended badly


31 CharityS October 29, 2013 at 10:39 pm

I would marry a better guy. I don’t regret having my son, but I would defiantly marry a better guy.


32 Gianna October 30, 2013 at 12:48 am

I wish I could have learned more cooking from my grandmother..


33 Sarah L October 30, 2013 at 4:43 am

I’d do over saying ‘yes’ to getting married.


34 heather c October 30, 2013 at 10:10 am

Now that I’m a parent, I wish I could go back and call my mom “when I arrive” all those times and keep her from worrying.


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